Yahoo Widget Engine 3.0
- Literally thousands of features to choose from, works well, looks nice, free!
- Lack of Australian coverage, greedy with system resources
A useful little program that makes accessing information a whole lot easier
One nice feature of Apple's latest incarnation of Mac OS X is dashboard, a plethora of little "widgets" designed to sit on your desktop and do useful things. These useful things might be keeping tabs on the stock market, showing the week's weather forecast or planning events on a calendar. While this may seem a tad gimmicky, it's a neat little feature that Windows users won't get until the launch of Vista later in the year. If you can't wait that long then the Yahoo! Widget Engine is just what you need.
You may be wondering exactly what a "widget" is. It's basically a small file that opens a floating application on your desktop. To use the widgets it's first necessary to download the Widget Engine. This controls all your widgets and allows them to be configured as you please. Widgets can be placed anywhere you want and customised to appear exactly how you'd like on the screen. They can be always on top, hidden beneath your other applications or set to appear when you press a hotkey. They can be different sizes, different colours and even different opacities. The Widget Engine makes everything very easy to use, once you've got it looking as you'd like, the settings are saved and the widgets pop up each time you boot your computer.
Yahoo! has included twenty widgets to play with as default. These include a calendar, weather forecast, stock ticker, various clocks and many more. As Yahoo! is primarily a search engine company it's no surprise to see a desktop search bar included also. The day planner widget can synchronise with Microsoft Outlook to give a visible reminder of all your daily tasks. If you have a Yahoo! mail account the Widget Engine can notify of you any new messages without the need to use a web browser. The twenty default widgets have varying degrees of usefulness. Some such as the digital clock seem a waste of space; others such as the moon phase monitor are obviously just for fun.
The real beauty of the program is that you can download other widgets from Yahoo!'s website, over two thousand of them, all for free. Many just have novelty value, such as the Harry Potter quote conjurer or the chicken that clucks each time you click it. Other more useful widgets include a desktop dictionary and a nice array of world clocks.
We especially liked the traffic monitors, these set up a direct link to transport authority road cameras, letting the user view conditions on a variety of busy roads. Most major Australian cities are covered. Other Aussie-specific widgets include keeping track of fuel prices (though it's only for Perth) and listening to Australian radio stations. The Australian coverage is lacking in a few areas - Yahoo!'s default mapping widget lacks any Australian maps for instance. The search function also includes Yellow Pages style functionality, but again this doesn't work for Australia.
One problem with Yahoo! Widget Engine is its demand for resources. Each widget uses a sizeable chunk of system RAM, so we only recommend using the program if you have a sufficiently powerful computer. You'll also need an internet connection to get the most out of the program as the majority of widgets cannot function without this. The program can also be a little buggy at times, crashing for no particular reason, but this seems to be rare. As the majority of available widgets are created by the public there is also no guarantee they will work either. But this is a free program, we can't expect miracles.. You can download widgets directly from Yahoo!
Join the newsletter!
Ballistix Sport AT
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Apple iMac Pro
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Toys for Boys
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
Tivoli PAL BT
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
ESET Internet Security
ESET Smart Security Premium
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
Ransomware has been one of the most prolific malware families for years, generating financial losses for targeted users and organizations, as well as significant revenue for cybercriminals.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo R17 Pro review: Oppo's thriftiest flagship yet drives a hard bargain
- 2 Google Home Hub review: A different kind of smart TV
- 3 Nokia 7.1 review: A modest and modern mid-tier option
- 4 Tenda Nova MW6 review: A gateway drug for mesh Wi-Fi
- 5 Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Expensive, but probably the best phone you can buy right now
Latest News Articles
- CBA capitulates, will support Apple Pay next year
- Intel unveils the Intel Neural Compute Stick 2
- Fetch TV expands with Aussie Broadband
- Adobe announces next generation of Creative Cloud
- Logitech announces Logitech Rally
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
- PC World 2018 Editor's Choice Awards
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Razer Phone 2 review: One for the fans
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?